What is a competitive landscape
Competitive landscape refers to the other options available to your client. It is the position that you or your company and associated products and services occupy in the market compared to your competitors. This position also determines a company’s strategy in the market and how it makes its decisions.
Example of a Competitive Advantage
Competitive advantage is evident in many areas of a business. For illustration purposes, let’s consider a coffee shop.
There are many companies in the coffee industry, such as Dunkin’s Starbucks, among others. These well-known brands are popular because of their convenience and reasonable price, but they are not the best-tasting coffee. Some coffee shops offer more personalized service and high-quality coffee but fail on comfort.
As such, the competitive advantage of the big brands is convenience and affordability, while for the less known shops is a personalized experience and top-notch coffee.
What is a competitive landscape map, and how does it work?
A competitive landscape map is a tool companies use to identify their position by considering their competitive advantage. Similarly, the tool helps them understand their competitors, thus helping them develop better marketing strategies.
How the Tool Works
The map is easy to use and consists of four elements representing a specific aspect of products in the market. After identifying the characteristics, the second step is placing your goods or the company according to how they fit.
After finishing, the spot where your goods fall gives you a rough idea of where you belong in the market vis a vis your competitors.
Comparing it to a SWOT analysis, the two are similar, although the competitive advantage is visual. This means that it helps identify and analyze your strengths and weaknesses quickly.
Why Map the Competitive Landscape?
Mapping the competitive landscape is crucial for any business. Apart from the already mentioned reason for helping you know where you stand, other significances include;
Identify Market Gaps
When you map the landscape, you can quickly identify the existing gaps. This helps you understand what a market looks like, how it is shifting, and what it is demanding.
Such information is necessary for making decisions regarding your marketing strategy. Further, the data can help you launch new products based on the market needs.
Helps Make Proper Investment Decisions
Landscaping helps a company avoid costly mistakes. By carrying out a landscape mapping, a company understands where and how to invest. After carrying out the mapping, you can know what exists; thus, you can’t put all your resources into developing an already developed product.
Leads to Innovations
Competitive landscaping is a precursor to innovations. After any mapping, you can know what a market demands and develop it. These may be a new product, modifications to existing ones, or personalization.
A competitive advantage is a vital business asset. Additionally, mapping out your market is also crucial if you survive the stiff competition. Finally, the findings from mapping need to be implemented and inform your strategies to stay ahead of competitors.